Damaged, Chapter Forty Nine

Title: Damaged
Author: aquariuslover
Pairing: Yunjae
Rating: R
Genre: Future AU, Drama, Angst

Summary: On a cold winter’s day he cast their love away for the sake of his family. The following autumn an act of vengeance left their love beyond the reaches of forgiveness. Two summers later a fan’s anger and the ultimate act of self-sacrifice would redefine everything they knew about love, pride, selfishness, and forgiveness.

First off I have to give special thanks to Dolphinchic (Amy)…who was there from the very beginning cheering me on with both TFAN and Damaged. My very own story consultant…who always gets the first look…first terrifying look and encourages me while at the same time offering constructive criticism. My favorite suggestion ever was when you so nicely suggested I watch gay porn.

Motty123, my friend for over a decade, who I love…when you started reading Damaged and actually liked it I could have wept. I was a little…whole lot insecure because I wondered if perhaps me and Amy weren’t both crazy. Sariah had already fled DMGD like her house was on fire. When you not only liked DMGD but offered to beta it I did the happy dance…I did. I have never been so happy to be corrected in my whole life. May you always be there to bitch with me, and to correct my horrendous grammar.

To all the wonderful readers who took the time to comment during the nine billion chapters…okay only forty nine chapters, but it sure felt like nine billion at times. I know at times the angst could be crippling for some. I thank you so much for sticking with the story, and I hope you weren’t too disappointed. Love you all!

Previous Chapters

Jae awoke to the sound of his own screaming and hands digging into his arms shaking him. “Fuck, Jae!” Yoochun screamed at him. “Wake up!”

Jae’s wet eyes flew open and he stared at his old friend. How could this be? Had he survived the jump? How could he have survived that jump? “No! Let me go!”

Yoochun pulled away startled as the other man awoke from his nightmare. “Jae, it is okay…it was just a nightmare.”

“No…no…no,” Jae whimpered as he rocked himself back and forth in bed. “Why did you save me? Please let me die.”

Yoochun’s eyes widened in immediate concern and turned to the bedside table, taking in all the empty bottles of alcohol. Jae had not stayed at the party long last night. He had stayed long enough for pictures, and then he had come back to the hotel to drown himself in his sorrows…could he have? “Jae, what did you do? Did you try to kill yourself?”

Jae jumped out of bed and away from Yoochun’s reach. “Yes, I can’t live without Yunho.”

Yoochun frowned and gave Jae a puzzled stare as he watched the other man stumble around the room as if he was still drunk. “You don’t have to. Yunho might be angry with you, but he loves you. He will forgive you.”

Jae shook his head and leaned against the wall, sobbing uncontrollably. “Yunho is dead…there will never be any forgiveness.”

Yoochun stood up and rushed to Jae, his voice full of concern for his friend. “Jae, Yunho is alive and well.”

Jae continued to shake his head, refusing to listen to the truth of Yoochun’s words. “No, he isn’t. He’s gone. Gone, my Yunho…gone.”

Yoochun put his hand up to Jae’s face, snapping his fingers to get Jae’s attention. “Yunho is perfectly fine. You two were fighting and you apparently got drunk of your ass and had some kind of nightmare, but he’s fine. He’s with Changmin and Junsu.”

At the mention of Changmin, Jae reached up and grabbed Yoochun by the shirt and shrieked. “Changmin knows! I didn’t lie! I am not full of false promises. You can’t trick me. I am going to die and join Yunho. I won’t live without him! I can’t!”

“I am not tricking you! He’s alive,” Yoochun shouted at the other man, trying to make him see sense.

“Liar!” Jae wailed at Yoochun, pushing him away as Jae slumped to the floor. “I want to die. Just let me die. Why didn’t I die?”

Yoochun just stared at Jae perplexed, and then a look of relief washed over him as he reached for his phone. “We will call Yunho.” Jae just pulled his knees up and hugged them tightly, ignoring Yoochun. Yoochun prayed that Yunho would answer the phone. His prayers were answered as the other man answered the phone almost immediately. “Yunho…Jae has lost his fucking mind…he had some nightmare you were dead and I can’t convince him it was a dream…no, he’s like crazy…keeps saying he’s going to kill himself…okay,” Yoochun told the other man, concern evident in his voice.

Yoochun knelt down in front of his hysterical friend and tried to coax the other man out of his private hell. “Jae, Yunho wants to talk to you. Talk to Yunho.”

“Lies! He’s gone,” Jae screamed, burying his face into his knees and refusing to look at Yoochun.

“No, he’s in Korea. He went back last night. He wanted to go back to Clear Creek. Remember?” Yoochun told him calmly as he reached a hand out and gently rubbed the other man’s leg.

At the mention of Clear Creek, something registered in Jae and he looked up at Yoochun. “Clear Creek?”

“Yes, Clear Creek. It’s been a year since he woke up there, and he wanted to go back. Do you remember?”

“If it was a dream…you couldn’t know about Clear Creek…” Jae told Yoochun as he grabbed the phone away from him. “Yunho,” Jae wept as his body shook with relief. “You are really alive….I was sure it was all a dream…that you died …yes, too much…I love you…I love you so much…I came back to the room last night and just drank and drank…I hate myself so much at times…I do…I should have been with you at Clear Creek…I am such a bastard…I am…No, you are perfect…you are…I couldn’t live without you…no, I couldn’t…I love you…I love you.”

Yoochun watched as Jae returned to reality and sighed in relief and pointed out to Jae, “Jae, we need to leave for the airport right now or we are going to miss our flight.”

Jae stood up on shaky legs, still clinging to the phone as if it was his lifeline to reality. “I have to get ready…I am so late…I am so sorry…no, it’s not your fault…it’s mine…I love…”

“Jae, we have to go, and you can’t be seen looking like a hung-over disaster,” Yoochun interrupted as he hurried into the bathroom to wet a washcloth for Jae’s face.


Yunho stared into the mirror in front of him as the hair and make-up artist worked on him. Yunho couldn’t help but smile. Yesterday he had looked into a mirror and felt nothing but misery, but today after coming to important decisions in his life he felt surprisingly calm. Yunho realized now that the only person in his life that he could change was himself.

The stylist pulled on Yunho’s hair, getting his attention. “What do you think? Think it’s time for a cut?”

“No,” Yunho answered quickly with a chuckle as he imagined Jae’s face if he cut his hair shorter.

She smiled down at him, and continued to style it. “Yeah, it looks good with a little length to it. Although another couple inches and you won’t be able to pull off the role of respectable business man,” she told him with a grin.

Yunho just smiled. “Maybe I wasn’t meant to be respectable.”

Changmin, who had slid into the chair beside Yunho, asked, “What does that mean? I swear if you start up that dreary talk again I am going to punch you.”

“Punch me?” Yunho replied in shock as he turned quickly to face Changmin, causing the stylist to frown as he messed up his hair.

“Yes, no more self wallowing…it’s annoying as hell. I thought you were better after speaking with Jae. You even slept on the ride home,” Changmin spit out as another stylist started applying his makeup.

Yunho rolled his eyes. “I was better before I talked to Jae. I have made peace with a lot of things. I’m good.”

Changmin folded his arms and cast his gaze till he was staring at Yunho’s reflection in the mirror. “Should I be scared? Is war about to break out?”

“Nope,” Yunho assured him.

“Why does SNSD have to be here? Couldn’t you send them back to Japan or something?” Junsu whined, walking up behind the other two men. He had been the first one of them to get ready.

Changmin smirked. “Afraid she might take you out on national television?”

Junsu grimaced. “Does she hate me that much?”

“Yep,” Changmin informed him.

Yunho couldn’t help but add, “She was encouraging Changmin to punch you at the Quake Survivors Benefit.”

“I should have insisted on a clause in the contract saying I never had to be in the same room with her,” Junsu moaned from behind them.

“Maybe you should just confront her. Apologize and get it over with,” Yunho suggested.

Changmin grinned at Junsu’s reflection in the mirror and couldn’t help but add, “But I would wait till there aren’t any cameras around.”

“Most definitely,” Yunho agreed.

“Most definitely what?” Heechul asked, walking up beside Junsu along with Eunhyuk.

“It’s a good idea for Junsu to put off confronting TaeYeon till there aren’t any cameras around,” Changmin told them.

“Or crowds,” Eunhyuk added, wrapping an arm around Junsu and grinning at his old friend.

“Or for that matter…sharp objects,” Heechul told him helpfully.

Junsu nodded his head. “Yeah, I think I might just put it off….for the rest of my life then.”

“Just take your beating like a man,” Eunhyuk told him.

“Or you could take it like….what is that pet word she has for you?” Heechul asked with a devious grin.

“What? Pet word? What does she call me?” Junsu asked instantly on guard. If something made Heechul grin…then it had to be bad.

“Oh, you will find out in time. I’m the MC for this shindig so I gotta go get even more beautiful than I already am,” Heechul told them, turning around and walking away, but Junsu couldn’t help but flinch when he heard Heechul cackling as he walked away.

“Seriously, what does she call me?” Junsu pleaded as he turned to face Eunhyuk.

Eunhyuk just smiled nervously at him and hugged him. “I am so glad Dong Bang Shin Ki is finally reunited and I’m glad you are back in SM with me.”

“Me too, but what does she call me?” Junsu appealed to his friend again.

Eunhyuk broke from the hug and backed away from his friend, looking extremely guilty. “You know I need to go talk to a choreographer…talk to you later!”

Junsu glowered at his friend as he hurried off. He turned back to the other two men in the chairs and placed a hand on each of their shoulders. “What does she call me?”

Yunho winced and admitted, “It’s not something we should discuss in a room full of people.”

Junsu took in the room full of other artists, staff, and a few reporters. “That bad?”

“That bad,” Changmin said, nodding his head.

“Yunho, do you think….” Junsu paused as the room went quite as Yoochun and Jae entered the room. “You two are late,” Junsu chastised them upon seeing them. “You are not even dressed yet.”

“Look at him. We haven’t been back in the group a day and he is already giving us grief,” Yoochun told everybody in the room, causing everybody to laugh, except for Yunho and Jae whose eyes were locked on each other. Jae still looked like he was stuck in a bad dream as he fought the urge to fling himself at Yunho.

Changmin got up quickly and moved to Junsu’s side. “He’s been like this all day.”

“I have not been,” Junsu immediately denied.

“You got him up too early. He gets cranky,” Yoochun explained as Jae moved past him to take the seat beside Yunho that Changmin had recently vacated. The three other members continued to talk loudly around their older hyungs, drowning out whatever the two had to say to each other.

Yunho reached out his hand, took Jae’s and squeezed it, and told him in a voice that lacked any harshness, “You look like shit.” Jae nodded his head in agreement and smashed his lips together, unable to say anything as emotions engulfed him. Jae hated the crowded room that kept him from feeling Yunho’s arms around him. He needed to feel those arms…feel the reality of those arms. Yunho read his mind and gently told him, “It was just a dream, Jae.”

“I know…the result of a guilty conscience,” Jae sniffled and admitted.

“You didn’t do anything to feel guilty about,” Yunho whispered to him knowingly.

“I treated you badly. I was playing one of my stupid games. I don’t know why I do the things I do,” Jae confessed to his calm lover beside him.

“I do,” Yunho declared softly. “I’ve thought a lot since I left you in Japan and the fault lies with both of us. Changmin once told me I was passive aggressive when it comes to you, and he was right. I think you want a response from me…need a response from me, but instead I always ignore you, keep it to myself, or just shut you out. I should have grabbed you by the collar yesterday and had it out with you….instead of silently fuming.”

A visible weight lifted from Jae. “Yes, it’s always better to just fight it out with each other. It’s always better that way,” Jae told Yunho as he squeezed his hand tighter.

“I am going to work on it.”

“And I am going to work on not doing stupid shit,” Jae told Yunho as he exhaled a deep breath that he didn’t even know he was holding.

Yunho grinned and winked at Jae. “Good luck with that.”

“I can only promise to try.”

“Speaking of stupid shit…why on earth did you buy Maggie’s cottage and not tell me?”

“How did you...I bought it for us, of course. I kept offering her huge amounts of money till she couldn’t help but sell it. I could never let anybody else own that house. It’s our special place.”

“Oh,” Yunho said, completely understanding its worth to Jae. “But you never told me. Why not?”

Jae blushed slightly. “I was going to surprise you, but then suddenly everything happened, so I had to keep putting it off. I finally decided I would just wait till your birthday and surprise you then.”

Yunho gave Jae a lecherous grin. “It’s not what I asked for…but I guess it can serve as the setting.”

Jae laughed. He slid his hand up Yunho’s arm and then reached for Yunho’s thigh and grabbed it like had done so many times before. “I wish I could hold you…hug you,” Jae whispered to Yunho. Jae hated the rumors surrounding them. He knew that even though Junsu, Changmin, and Yoochun were talking loudly behind them and putting on a show for the other people in the room there would always be eyes glued to the two of them.

Yunho’s eyes sparkled and he asked, “Do you really, Jae?” Jae inhaled a deep breath, and before he could answer, the producer of the show walked up, clearing his throat.

“Mr. Jung, I wanted to go over the arrangements one more time.”

Yunho turned to face the producer. “After Super Junior finishes performing I make my way to the stage and I thank everybody for coming, their support, their donations, and then I tell the world that….” Yunho stopped smiling at the four members around him. “I tell the world that Dong Bang Shin Ki is reborn.”

The four other members smiled back at him. The producer grinned back at them but corrected Yunho. “You need to wait for ‘Holding Out For A Hero’ to start playing before you go up on stage."

Yunho frowned and groaned. “No, not that song again?”

“Yes, that song,” the producer told him as he walked away.

“I..don’t…argh…” Yunho pouted, folding his arms looking all of ten years old.

Changmin grinned at him and told him in a voice full of snark, “It is your theme song after all.”

Yunho gave Changmin a look of disgust. “No, it isn’t.”

“It totally is,” Yoochun couldn’t help but reply.

Junsu, who was standing between Changmin and Yoochun, smiled and much to Yunho’s absolute horror started singing, ‘Where have all the good men gone, And where are all the gods? Where's the street-wise Hercules, To fight the rising…. ' Junsu yelped as Yunho lunged for him…amazingly agile for a man of his physical limitations. Junsu stared up at his humiliated hyung, who had him by both arms, trying his best not to laugh.

“What’s your problem, Yunho? Do you have something against heroes?” Jae asked, his voice full of challenge as he stared at Yunho, not hiding his implied intent.

Yunho let go of Junsu and turned around to stare at Jae. “Absolutely not. I love heroes,” Yunho told him, not backing down and walking up to Jae’s chair, letting the man know that the room full of people did not bother him in the slightest, and if Jae pushed him he would prove it to him. “Come to think of it…this might be my theme song after all.”

Jae reached up, grabbed Yunho’s hand, and whispered, “You never have to hold out for long.”

“Oh My God! Why are you two not dressed?” the head stylist screamed when she walked into the room and saw Yoochun and Jae. She grabbed Yoochun by the arm and pulled Jae from his chair, ignoring Yunho. She dragged them out of the room to their shock to get them dressed.

Yunho watched them being dragged from the room by the angry stylist and smirked. “Maybe they will have to wear fur and funny clothes now.”

Changmin walked up to Yunho and patted his arm. “I highly doubt it. Yoochun and Jae would never agree to wear such things.”

“You can refuse her?” Yunho asked, completely surprised.

Changmin turned to grin at his surprised hyung. “You didn’t know?”

“No,” Yunho admitted.

“That explains so much,” Changmin told him, not bothering to suppress his chuckle.


They sat in their old order; Junsu, Yoochun, Jae, Changmin and Yunho. The balconies behind them were filled with screaming and crying fans. The rumors of a Dong Bang Shin Ki reunion had only grown ten times stronger after their beautiful performance in Japan the day before.

Although the concert hall was filled with fans of all SM artists, every fan with a heart could not help but feel Cassiopeia’s joy. The fans that had held out hope for the five of them rejoiced today as their dreams came true. The waiting was over, and all their faith and love was about to be paid off in full.

Yunho clapped for Super Junior as they finished their performance. As the members of Super Junior returned to their seats, they all made a point of high fiving all the members of Dong Bang Shin Ki. Heechul, who walked behind his other members, stopped when he came to Yunho and bent down and hugged him. “Feel free to blubber…the more tears the more donations,” Heechul whispered in his ear shrewdly, causing Yunho to laugh just when Yunho was about to be overcome with other emotions.

Yunho was still laughing when the song he loathed so much started playing, signifying for him to take the stage. Yunho mustered up all his courage as he stood up to take stage with his trusty cane in his hand. He couldn’t risk falling on his way to the stage, especially when he was on his way to make what might be the most important announcement of his life. As Yunho walked toward the stage, the concert hall erupted in cheers from happy fans, reporters, and his fellow idols. He reached the stage and carefully made it up the stairs and walked to the podium, and couldn’t help but look at the members of F(x) and SHINee who were whistling at him. He waved his hand disapprovingly at them in mock anger, causing the concert hall to fill with laughter.

Yunho stared out at the crowd. He smiled at Jae and the other members, then spoke his truth. “One year ago, I awoke in a strange place with a body that I did not want to claim as my own. It was nothing like the body I remembered…it was more like a prison. For days, I lacked the simple ability to even communicate with the people around me…who were all strangers. I listened as nurses and doctors spoke of irreversible brain damage, and of the great tragedy that had befallen me. I came to the conclusion it was better to live that hell in secret. I thought if my family and friends knew that I was trapped in that useless body, then I would only become a burden to them. I vowed that nobody would know I had returned to my mind.”

“Then I awoke one day, and a person that I had thought I had lost forever, a long time ago in what seemed like another life, appeared. You cannot imagine my shock at finding Jae there beside me. I had no intention of sharing my return to reality with him or anybody else. In the years since Dong Bang Shin Ki had fallen apart, I had forgotten just how relentless he could be. So my secret was soon discovered and I begrudgingly accepted his help, and that’s when my real recovery started.”

“There are many theories about what led to the break-up of Dong Bang Shin Ki, but only the five of us know the truth…and we each have our own separate truth. We are five very different men that shared a deep bond of brotherhood that was formed in our youth as we lived the same dream together. But sadly, sometimes the bond men share is not enough to overcome the test of time or outside forces working against that bond.”

“I won’t stand up here and lie and say there was never a problem between the members, because that would be a discredit to everything we overcome to stand together again. I will not dishonor all we faced, mended, and accepted to be together again. Because yes, once again Dong Bang Shin Ki is the five of us. The way it should have always been, and the way it will continue to be as long as the five us live.”

The concert hall erupted in applause and tears of happiness, but Yunho wasn’t finished. He held up his hands, signalling for silence. Yunho looked down at the members and smiled, and then looked back out to the vast crowd. “I have to apologize to you all. It was because of my failures as a leader that we ever got to this point in the first place. I let pride, fear, and my misconceptions of right and wrong come between me and that which I love most in the world. I failed my members and I failed the fans. I hope someday I can earn your forgiveness.”

Yunho looked back down to Jae with eyes of determination and fearlessness and spoke without faltering. “But most importantly, I must apologize to Jae, one of my oldest and dearest. I have known you for many years, but I haven’t always understood you. I know I have made things extremely difficult for you at times, and pushed you pass your limits. I haven’t always appreciated you as much as I should have. I have put my own pride and others before you, and that is a mark on my soul that will not wash away easily. Jae, I can’t tell you how…sorry I am.”

Jae’s face went blank, but his eyes never left Yunho. Changmin gasped in shock from beside Jae. Yoochun smiled in utter delight, clapping his hands together, and Junsu just stared at Yunho with his mouth wide open. The three waited for Jae to storm the stage and once and for all claim Yunho as his own, but instead he didn’t move from his seat. He just stared at Yunho as tears welled in his eyes, washing away the damage that all his insecurities had done to him over the years.

Yunho smiled down at Jae in understanding without any blame or anger. Yunho continued in the same strong unfaltering voice. “Dong Bang Shin Ki is reunited and we will be a group, but it will not be as it was before. We are five different men and we shall not always be bound by the rule of five. Each member will be allowed to pursue his own interests and shall not be limited by the group. The group will not stifle its members, but instead it will encourage the dreams of all its members. Each member will be allowed to pursue his own interests whether it be school, acting, producing, writing, musicals, or directing.”

“For instance, I shall be excluded from the initial come back of Dong Bang Shin Ki. I have an opportunity to go to a rehabilitation center in the States that specializes in returning prior mobility to people such as me who have lost function of their body through brain injuries. When I see you again, I hope to be rid of this cane,” Yunho said, holding up his cane, causing the crowd to cheer more loudly.

Changmin was glaring a hole into Jae, debating if Yunho would forgive him if he punched Jae again. Yoochun was staring at Jae in open disgust. Junsu kept his eyes on Yunho, smiling encouragingly at him. Junsu was looking for any sign that Yunho might falter, and he was ready to run up and join him on stage at the first sign.

Jae was unaware of the displeased men surrounding him. He was only aware of the man on stage…the man on stage who loved him, like nobody had ever loved him before, and like nobody would ever love him again. Yunho wasn’t testing him or forcing the issue. Yunho was just making it very clear that he loved him…loved him more than he cared what anybody thought. Yunho had not always put him first, but he was now. Yunho’s love for Jae would not change depending on whether he stayed seated or joined him on stage.

Yunho was just proving to him in the most spectacular way he could that whatever shame he had once felt at being in a homosexual relationship with Jae was gone. Yunho would willingly admit his feelings to the world, but only if Jae was willing. Most importantly, Yunho was showing him that he would never deny him again. If Jae took that stage…Yunho would never be able to deny what they were to each other. Yunho would never be straight again, SM’s golden idol, or his father’s perfect son…if Jae took that stage…he would always be Jae’s.

Jae stood up and without hesitation walked toward the stage. Jae’s eyes never left Yunho as he climbed the stairs to the stage. He walked toward Yunho with a determination that was only matched by Yunho’s. Yunho smiled at him with nothing but love, but at the same time reached out his hand for a handshake, giving Jae one more chance to back out.

Changmin watched, hoping for the best but fearing the worst, as his heart pounded out of his chest. Yoochun was all smiles as he reached over and dragged Changmin from his seat into Jae’s recently vacated one. “It’s about to get good, brothers,” Yoochun told them, wrapping an around both Junsu and Changmin.

Jae walked up to Yunho and stopped, and smirked at the outstretched hand even as he took it. Yunho smiled back at him as he shook the other man’s hand firmly. He completely understood Jae’s resistance and he would not push him. Yunho had decided he would just spend his life loving Jae the best he could, and accepting whatever life had in store for the two of them.

Jae shook Yunho’s hand with one hand as his other hand whipped up and grabbed a startled Yunho by the tie, pulling him down into a heated kiss the likes of which none would soon forget. Yunho smiled into the kiss as he wrapped his arms around Jae’s waist, letting his cane drop to the floor.

Half of the concert hall erupted in screams of joy from fans as the other half of the crowd sat in stunned silence, not believing their eyes. Heechul took in the crowd’s reaction and knew something had to be done quickly before shocked faces turned to angry faces. Heechul stood up and gave Yunho and Jae a standing ovation. He was soon followed by Kyuhyun and Ryeowook and the other members of Super Junior, SHINee, SNSD, F(x) and all the other idols present. The fans soon followed suit with most of them screaming out their undying support, while some cried as they realized their oppas would never be theirs.

Changmin, Yoochun, and Junsu looked at each other, their minds as one, and got up and headed for the stage to show their support. They made their way to the stage and stood behind their hyungs, clapping along with the crowd and showing their support for their most beloved hyungs. They knew that Jae and Yunho would need their support in the days, weeks, months, and years to come…the lifetime to come.

Yunho and Jae broke from their passionate kiss to gaze into each other’s eyes, knowing that nothing would ever be the same again. They kept their arms tightly wrapped around each other’s waists, showing the world their love was for real and not fleeting. They knew their future would not be easy, and many struggles would lie ahead of them. They knew in that moment that as long as they were together then they could handle whatever the world threw at them. They smiled at each other and leaned in for another long lingering kiss for all the world to see. A kiss free of secrecy, shame, and full of hope…hope they would finally be free of all the damage they had ever done to each other.

The End…
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  • Current Music: Holding Out For A Hero, Bonnie Tyler

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